OUR TEAM

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The Diagnostic and Counseling Center is unique in that we offer both assessment and treatment in the same facility. Whether you are looking for a diagnosis, or psychotherapy, our team is highly qualified to meet your needs.

Dr. Bahareh Talei

Dr. Bahareh Talei received her Doctorate of Psychology (Psy.D.) from Pepperdine University, Graduate School of Education and Psychology. Dr. Talei is a licensed psychologist and is co-founder of Diagnostic & Counseling Center (DCC). Her experience has primarily been in working with children and adolescents with various disabilities such as autism and difficulties with learning and attention. Throughout her career, Dr. Talei has been actively engaged in the assessment of a diverse population (e.g., pervasive developmental disorder, learning disorders, central nervous system damage) and training of other professionals. Her experience and interests also includes conducting individual and group psychotherapy with family members of children with developmental disabilities and other populations (e.g., depression, anxiety disorders, and infertility).

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Cara Itule

Cara Itule, MFT received her Masters degree in clinical psychology with an emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy from Pepperdine University. Holding over 20 years experience in child development, she specializes in generalized anxiety and mood disorders in children.
 

Moreover, she works with adults and adolescents. She is the co-founder of Diagnostic and Counseling Center and has proudly worked alongside Dr. Talei in diagnostic assessments for over 12 years. Her main areas of assessment are ADHD, Autism Spectrum, giftedness, and other learning disorders.

Robin Wolvak, AMFT

Robin Wolvek is a Registered Associate Marriage and Family Therapist. She holds a Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology with an Emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy from Pepperdine University, Graduate School of Education and Psychology. Robin worked with at risk teens in foster care with severe behavioral and emotional dysregulation in a group home setting for six years.

She then went into a master’s program and received clinical training in psychodynamic therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy techniques while working with adults. Throughout her education and training, Robin has learned to incorporate tools from psychodynamic therapy, CBT, DBT, Mindfulness based therapies, culturally sensitive therapy, and Gestalt techniques to tailor treatment to each individual client and best meet their needs.

Emilyn Ahmed, AMFT

Robin Wolvek is a Registered Associate Marriage and Family Therapist. She holds a Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology with an Emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy from Pepperdine University, Graduate School of Education and Psychology. Robin worked with at risk teens in foster care with severe behavioral and emotional dysregulation in a group home setting for six years.

She then went into a master’s program and received clinical training in psychodynamic therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy techniques while working with adults. Throughout her education and training, Robin has learned to incorporate tools from psychodynamic therapy, CBT, DBT, Mindfulness based therapies, culturally sensitive therapy, and Gestalt techniques to tailor treatment to each individual client and best meet their needs.

Katelyn Starr, AMFT

Katelyn is an Associate Marriage and Family Therapist at the Diagnostic and Counseling Center. She graduated with a master’s degree in Clinical Psychology with an Emphasis on Marriage and Family Therapy from Pepperdine University in Malibu, CA.

Katelyn has worked in a variety of mental health settings throughout the last seven years. Most of her experience has been working with children and their families struggling with mental health issues. She has also worked with adults experiencing symptoms of depression, anxiety, post-partum depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, medical issues, work stress, and relationship problems. Additionally, she has experience working with adults in recovery and those seeking assistance with medication management.
 

Katelyn works with couples and individuals. She is committed to growing and learning through her work with future clients. Katelyn has a warm communication style and believes everyone has a unique story and perspective. She tailors her style to meet the needs and goals of each client. Katelyn is currently taking new clients and can offer a complimentary consultation upon request. Katelyn is working under the supervision of Cara Itule, LMFT.

Laura McGovern, AMFT

Laura McGovern is a Registered Associate Marriage and Family Therapist and Registered Associate Professional Clinical Counselor. Laura obtained her master’s degree in Clinical Psychology with an Emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy from Pepperdine University’s Graduate School of Education and Psychology. Through this program, Laura received clinical training in numerous modalities. Now working primarily from a client-centered and holistic approach, Laura integrates her training and knowledge to personalize therapy to each individual.
 

Laura has worked with children, adolescents, couples, and adults facing a variety of issues—including anxiety, depression, relationship issues, emotion dysregulation, phase of life issues, and grief. Passionate about empowering individuals and reducing stigma attached to mental health, Laura provides a safe and non-judgmental collaborative space for clients to explore and process difficult topics,

Abeera Tareen, AMFT

Abeera Tareen (she/her) is a Registered Associate Marriage and Family Therapist (#133799). Abeera obtained her M.A. in Clinical Psychology with an Emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy from Pepperdine University, and her B.A. in Gender Studies from University of California, Los Angeles. 
 

Abeera works with clients of all ages and cultural backgrounds. She typically works from a Cognitive-Behavioral lens and Humanistic lens, but is a strong believer that therapy needs to be tailored to fit the individual. Abeera is so excited to help you work towards growth, healing, awareness, processing, and reflection. 

Alison Steitler, AMFT

Alison Stiteler is an Associate Marriage and Family Therapist and Associate Professional Clinical Counselor. Alison obtained her master’s degree in Clinical Psychology with an Emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy from Pepperdine University. Alison has an extensive background in mental health and actively pursues trainings, workshops and consultation from experts in the field. She has a nonjudgmental, soft and honest approach to working with clients. Alison incorporates different modalities into her work, and put simply, she takes an eclectic approach to working with clients. She works with a wide array of individuals, and most commonly works with the following diagnoses and symptoms: depression, anxiety, psychotic disorders,  bereavement and loss, substance use issues, bipolar disorder, self-esteem issues, work issues, stress, and relational difficulties. 
 

Alison’s style is built upon the notion that meaningful connection creates meaningful existence. In the wise words of Brené Brown, “Rarely can a response make something better. What makes something better is connection.” To schedule a complementary consultation, please call the phone number listed on our website and ask for Alison. Alison looks forward to working with you and wishes you well on your journey. 

Vandad Gashtili, AMFT

Vandad Gashtili, AMFT received his Masters degree in Clinical Psychology with an emphasis on Marriage and Family Therapy from Pepperdine University, Graduate School of Education and Psychology. Vandad has been working in the field of mental health for over five years working with adolescents and adults dealing with various mood and anxiety disorders.

Vandad has a passion for helping others overcome anxiety and has begun to incorporate various methods in his practice such as CBT, mindfulness and meditation practices.  Furthermore, he does not believe that one size fits all and can tailor treatment depending on clients needs.

Lorraine Gray, Psy.D, LMFT

The challenges of life are our hopes, dreams, and sometimes disappointments. There is an adage that in every crisis, there is an opportunity. I have been a licensed therapist since 2013. My experience is in Forensics Psychology (working with angry individuals) and integrative medicine (in hospital settings). I use all evidence-based therapy which includes: Acceptance, Commitment Therapy (ACT), mindfulness, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), and Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR). In my therapeutic practice, I work with people who are adult survivors of trauma, accidents, loss, depression, anxiety, porn addiction, and PTSD. I also work with LGBT and transgender issues. I have a great passion for helping people. I am committed to working with you at your pace with understanding, patience, care, and excellent listening skills.    

Brooke Wexler, AMFT, APCC

Brooke Wexler worked in the entertainment industry for almost ten years. However, her passion for mindfulness and mental well-being led her to pursue a career in psychology as a therapist. Brooke received her Master’s in Clinical Psychology at Pepperdine University and is now a registered Associate Marriage and Family Therapist and an Associate Clinical Professional Counselor. Her unique experience and clinical training in acute care have made her comfortable working with a range of clients, primarily in treating mood disorders, anxiety disorders, and psychotic disorders. Brooke tailors her treatment by utilizing modalities such as mindfulness, CBT, and psychodynamic theory but truly believes in an approach unique to each individual.